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The Linux desktop 'mess'
TechRepublic ^ | 8 April 2013 | Jack Wallen

Posted on 04/10/2013 5:50:05 AM PDT by ShadowAce

Takeaway: Is the Linux desktop really a “mess” as some pundits call it? Jack Wallen takes issue with this claim and explains why he thinks the desktop is getting a bad rap.

It seems nearly every pundit, every mouthpiece on the planet has decided that the Linux desktop is a “mess.” This “downfall” of the Linux desktop started with GNOME 3 and seemed to gain more momentum with Ubuntu Unity. I have a theory — and an idea for a fix.

Linux is all about choice. It’s always been that way; from the earliest inception of the desktop, the Linux community has enjoyed CFE, AfterStep, FluxBox, XFCE, Enlightenment, KDE, LXDE, Cinnamon …

Oh, and GNOME and Ubuntu Unity.

Actually, the list goes on and on.

I’ve used almost every Linux desktop — some good, some not so good. To say that GNOME 3 and Unity are a “mess,” well, I’m not sure I get that. When KDE 4 first arrived — that was a mess (it has, since then, come a long, long way). Windows 8 — that is a mess. But both GNOME 3 and Ubuntu Unity? Both are solid, stable desktops that not only work well, but help to make the user focus on the work and the keyboard. Both desktops are efficient. But different and unique.

But wait, doesn’t the Linux community thrive on that?

My theory is simple (and it’s one I’ll probably get blasted for):

The whole “mess” centers on GNOME 3 and Unity. They are the two key players in the battle. If you think about it, it’s not that GNOME 3 and Unity are all that different — it’s that they took on one of the favorite desktops (what is now called Classic GNOME) and radically altered it. So users of GNOME 2.x are forced to use something new and change the way they work.

Different.

The majority of Linux users are, at the core, much like other users — they don’t like change. I was always one of those who jumped from desktop to desktop, just for the fun of it. I enjoyed trying new things and seeing what each interface had to offer. Even though Enlightenment still stands as one of my all time favorite interfaces, I use Unity — because it’s so different (and it has some features that I’ve grown reliant upon). I have fond memories of experiencing the Minimalism of FluxBox and the trickery that can be used with AfterStep. But that’s not the way of the average user. The average user (and I don’t mean this as if it’s a bad thing) gloms onto one idea (or, in this case, interface) and holds on for dear life.

When KDE 4 first came out, the KDE community was in an uproar — and the differences between KDE 3 and 4 are minimal — relatively speaking. Eventually KDE 4 won over the hearts of the community and the desktop just keeps getting better and better. When GNOME 3 arrived, it looked as if it could have been a huge success, but then politics came into play, and the users felt like the developers weren’t listening to them… and in the end, you have a desktop that is actually quite good, but no one wants to use.

Unity has the same issue — with the added bonus of being strapped down by the backlash of a community that feels like Canonical is doing whatever it wants to Ubuntu Linux without a care or concern about their users.

Everyone just wants to go back to Classic GNOME and be done with it. Well, not everyone. In comparison to what we have now, Classic GNOME would look and feel like a dinosaur (to me, at least). So, yes, I am saying it seems as if it would take a giant step backwards to appease the majority of the Linux community.

We cannot afford to take even the tiniest step backward.

So, what is the solution? Simple: Merge GNOME 3 and Ubuntu Unity. Take the best of both and code them into a single, wonder-filled desktop. Bring the minds and talents of the developers of both teams together and have at it. Maybe the layout of GNOME 3, Unity’s Dash, the GNOME 3 notification system and pager, the Unity HUD, the GNOME 3 compositor, and so on. Set aside the whole Wayland/Mir debacle, come up with a plan, and create a desktop every member of the Linux community would be proud to use.

I know, the politics of the idea would hit critical mass and it would be nightmare to maneuver. But if done properly, it could win back the masses and continue the forward motion started by both desktops.

There are a lot of Linux users out there holding onto grudges because one desktop or another slighted their project or their favorite tool. It’s time we let go of that grudge and start thinking of the future. Linux is on a major precipice that could see it winning over a huge amount of users. With Windows 8 continuing to fail (and Microsoft doing nothing about it), the Linux community needs to look upon the current stagnation at Microsoft and take advantage of it. Merge, work together, accept, move on — whatever you have to do to look into the future and help the Linux desktop to get back on track.


TOPICS: Computers/Internet
KEYWORDS: choice; linux
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1 posted on 04/10/2013 5:50:05 AM PDT by ShadowAce
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To: rdb3; Calvinist_Dark_Lord; Salo; JosephW; Only1choice____Freedom; amigatec; stylin_geek; ...

2 posted on 04/10/2013 5:50:23 AM PDT by ShadowAce (Linux -- The Ultimate Windows Service Pack)
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ive test driven many distributions, and actually enjoyed puppy linux, the live versions, etc...

i have rescued many an old pc from the dump, slapped a linux distro of some sort on it, and off i went, no issues....


3 posted on 04/10/2013 5:55:49 AM PDT by raygunfan
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To: raygunfan

I run Linux Mint 9 and just recently installed it on my wife’s laptop, finally dumping Windows...

I’ve had no problems on either computer..


4 posted on 04/10/2013 6:00:51 AM PDT by Bigh4u2 (Denial is the first requirement to being a liberal)
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To: Bigh4u2

It is a very simple test to determine if linux measures up. Can a user with little or no knowledge about linux, and with the basic knowledge of interacting with the Windows desktop, successfully operate in the linux desktop? If they cannot, linux loses every time.


5 posted on 04/10/2013 6:22:29 AM PDT by SgtHooper (The last thing I want to do is hurt you. But it's still on the list.)
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To: Bigh4u2; raygunfan

I currently run XFCE on Fedora. It’s a great GP distro.


6 posted on 04/10/2013 6:23:11 AM PDT by ShadowAce (Linux -- The Ultimate Windows Service Pack)
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To: ShadowAce

I will say that Unity seems dreadfully slow and mal-designed to me.

However, desktop Wars have been going on for as long as I can remember. Why does anyone expect anything different?
Choice is a good thing and you have more choice then any other platform.

The truth however may be that the Linux desktop is more unified for most users then ever before and nobody has noticed because it is on your phone.


7 posted on 04/10/2013 6:24:10 AM PDT by The Free Engineer
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To: SgtHooper
Then it wins pretty handily.

My then-9-yo son downloaded a distro, burned it to DVD, and baremetal installed it on a computer while I was out of town. He had never before touched Linux.

8 posted on 04/10/2013 6:25:14 AM PDT by ShadowAce (Linux -- The Ultimate Windows Service Pack)
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To: ShadowAce

I got a windows 8 abortion on my new commuter and I cant think of any thing worse. Windows 3 was better. If you look for something and finally find it the next step will be over on the other side of the screen, that is after you finally get past the cartoon screen or touch screen thingy that is worse than worthless. I is in the way. Why can’t they let people arrange the things the way they are used to so you don’t have to explore the whole page every time you boot up.


9 posted on 04/10/2013 6:31:37 AM PDT by mountainlion (Live well for those that did not make it back.)
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To: ShadowAce

If you are a corporation with say 5000 desktop users on Windows XP or Windows 7, what does “choice” mean to you?

IF it means you have to spend thousands or maybe more dollars to TRAIN people on how to do simple things like sending/receiving email or printing (or even generating) their documents then it’s a losing proposition.

IMHO that was the greatest advantage of the early Windows (95,ME,even 2000) systems. It was WYSIWYG.

Plain. Simple.

You could run a windows system and not really even know much about windows.

What the heck does the 4 windows deal in Linux really represent? Why can’t I ever use the MAN command and figure out how even to close it and go back to where I was?

Linux is a dam mess.

You do not get productivity out of changing (or ENHANCING) user interfaces.

djf
(mainframe systems engineer since 1985!!!)


10 posted on 04/10/2013 6:37:24 AM PDT by djf (Rich widows: My Bitcoin address is... 1ETDmR4GDjwmc9rUEQnfB1gAnk6WLmd3n6)
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To: ShadowAce

The article is 100% spot on when he says users do not like change. That is so true and so to the point.

I would make a couple of points.

Gnome3 is far from perfect but I use it every day on two machines and I’ve never been more efficient. Would I change things about Gnome3? Sure I would. But is it usable in its current form? Absolutely it is.

The word “mess” I think has been incorporated into the collective subconcious because Linus Torvalds at one point famous pronounced Gnome3 an “unholy mess”. However, I now know that Linus himself is using Fedora 18 - he may not be using Gnome3 (probably not) but he’s getting stuff done with one DE or another.

One thing that I’ve noticed in reading the Gnome team’s frequent postings - people who work in such a project are *obsessed* about look and feel sorts of issues - as I guess you would expect them to be. Just as you would expect Kernel folks not to be :) They’ll go on and on about window placement algorithms or square corners versus rounded corners. If I could change one thing I’d request that they be a bit more forest oriented and less anal-retentive about corners and borders and how long a notification stays up or whatever the case may be but I don’t see that changing anytime soon because that’s probably just the nature of the beast.


11 posted on 04/10/2013 7:08:00 AM PDT by 2 Kool 2 Be 4-Gotten
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To: djf

Hear!Hear!

My view is that all too many of the computer operating systems,desktop interfaces,and programs suffer from the egos of software writers showing off;continous improvement is one thing,but adding useless “features” and changing how everything works only slows down the machine and the work.

If the software people designed cars,the steering wheel and gas pedal would be in a different place in every car and change from year to year.And you’d need a different fuel,too!

The basic windows concept is fine and you can add me as another who doesn’t like change that doesn’t bring significant new benefits.

I also despise software that tries to anticipate your next action and re-arranges the desktop based on past work.

When I put something in place A it should stay there!


12 posted on 04/10/2013 7:09:03 AM PDT by hoosierham (Freedom isn't free)
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To: Bigh4u2

Running mint 12 here, no troubles at all .


13 posted on 04/10/2013 7:14:32 AM PDT by sopwith (don't tread on me)
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To: SgtHooper

The answer to the question is ‘yes’.

My wife’s knowledge about computers is about as ‘basic’ as you can get, and she had no problem switching from
Windows to Linux.

Linux Mint interface is nearly identical to what she was used to so there was no confusion.


14 posted on 04/10/2013 7:22:59 AM PDT by Bigh4u2 (Denial is the first requirement to being a liberal)
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To: ShadowAce

xfce4 and openbox on my arch and debian installations

Don`t care for the gnome3 particularly..kde I use a bit.

Tried the ubuntu but really don`t care for unity.

Ran unity on arch,but it was more trouble than it was

worth.


15 posted on 04/10/2013 7:29:53 AM PDT by Harold Shea (RVN `70 - `71)
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To: sopwith

I’m running Bodhi Linux with E17 on this Thinkpad 390E PII 333 ,256mb ram and it runs great ,if you can use windows you can use linux ,plus you have tons of Free software with linux


16 posted on 04/10/2013 7:51:05 AM PDT by molson209
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To: ShadowAce

Linux will ALWAYS be a mess as long as there are multiple parties publishing multiple versions.


17 posted on 04/10/2013 7:55:32 AM PDT by BubbaBasher ("Liberty will not long survive the total extinction of morals" - Sam Adams)
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To: ShadowAce

Isn’t Linux the only “FR approved” operating system?


18 posted on 04/10/2013 7:57:07 AM PDT by nascarnation (Baraq's economic policy: trickle up poverty)
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To: djf
Plain. Simple.

I'll buy that.

You and I are on different ends of the business - I am a service tech, servicing primarily SOHO and Residential- But the principle is the same. I have been installing *nix in residential applications for some years now, and I never hear a peep... Until they (the nix dist) start screwing with the interface design. Then it's hours of phone time, trying to get my clients settled again.

One of the things I have always liked about Linux is that it doesn't change the interface very much (considering how long things have been around).

But don't get me wrong - MS Windows is a far more worthy culprit. Most of my help-desk type calls right now are "How do I do XXXX in Windows 8?"

At least you have the 'convenience' of handling a major change all at once. For me it may stretch out for years as each of my clients upgrade and run into the new thing. Horror Highway. And I seldom get paid for help-desk things.

19 posted on 04/10/2013 9:30:15 AM PDT by roamer_1 (Globalism is just socialism in a business suit.)
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To: ShadowAce

No. Unity really does suck...

Rest of the article is pretty good.


20 posted on 04/10/2013 9:33:59 AM PDT by Dead Corpse (I will not comply.)
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To: hoosierham

Well said. Especially the car example.

And let’s not forget the cell phones that want to make you think they are computers and are so jazzed up you can’t even make a dam call!
Or the computers that want to convince you they are movie theatres or recording studios!


21 posted on 04/10/2013 9:34:23 AM PDT by djf (Rich widows: My Bitcoin address is... 1ETDmR4GDjwmc9rUEQnfB1gAnk6WLmd3n6)
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To: roamer_1

The majority of people who use computers are not technical, AND THEY DON’T WANT TO BE!

They want their computer to be like the old TV’s.

Those TV’s had:
An on/off button
A rotary dial for the channels.

People these days still want much the same.
An on/off button.
One channel to get/send email
One channel to see pics of the grandkids
One channel to show them the weather
One channel to show highlights of last nights Lakers game

They don’t want to know about SUDO’s and program fixes and hacker attacks!!

And NO MATTER WHAT they do, when they turn their machine off and then turn it back on, it should GO BACK TO THE STATE IT WAS IN when they first turned it on.They can still see their emails (maybe out on the Cloud), but Javascript or Flash or some other bastid didn’t come along and wipe out their hard drive or hijack their internet connection.

It’s very poor design, whether it be Windows or Linux, to let some application tweak the registry or modify functionality without thorough testing and acceptance. Any decent SDLC (software development life cycle) person can tell you that.


22 posted on 04/10/2013 9:52:57 AM PDT by djf (Rich widows: My Bitcoin address is... 1ETDmR4GDjwmc9rUEQnfB1gAnk6WLmd3n6)
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To: ShadowAce
and create a desktop every member of the Linux community would be proud to use.

Not possible.

The beauty of Linux, is that you can do things your way. One desktop may suit one way of working, while another suits something else.

i use XFCE at work because I need a more minimalist environment there, while at home I'm generally happy with KDE and like the way it works. I love KIOSlaves

I like the fact that you have at least 2, (some would argue 3 or more), major desktops that work in different ways. Competition is what works, and makes things better in the end.

 

23 posted on 04/10/2013 10:06:28 AM PDT by zeugma (Those of us who work for a living are outnumbered by those who vote for a living.)
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To: ShadowAce
Here's the message that computer and OS makers have never gotten through their retarded noggins:

Most companies do not, cannot, and never intended to try to make a profit with 99% of their workforce dinking around with the operating system kinks and barbs for 99% of their time.

Businesses need STABLE desktop and laptop operating systems and applications to conduct THEIR BUSINESS, to read and write business stuff, to send and receive email, to move files from one system to another (usually across multiple platforms), to design stuff, buy stuff, sell stuff, etc., etc.; none of which is enhanced by having everyone tinkering with the operating system all day, every day.

Many of us have wasted days, nights, and weekends playing techie since the days of DOS 0.00001, and it doesn't move the economy forward. It eventually puts us 17 Trillion in debt.

24 posted on 04/10/2013 10:26:44 AM PDT by meadsjn
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To: meadsjn

Believe it or not, I still have a faded, old 6 inch floppy that says... “IBM DOS 1.2” on the label. Single sided, 160KB.

>DEBUG

Them was the daze!!


25 posted on 04/10/2013 10:44:40 AM PDT by djf (Rich widows: My Bitcoin address is... 1ETDmR4GDjwmc9rUEQnfB1gAnk6WLmd3n6)
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To: meadsjn

I hardly think OSes put this country into debt.


26 posted on 04/10/2013 10:45:53 AM PDT by CodeToad (Liberals are bloodsucking ticks. We need to light the matchstick to burn them off.)
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To: molson209

PCLinuxOS LXDE version runs super fast on my ancient T40 laptop. The KDE version runs extremely well on my ten-year-old Dell desktop. And if I — a non-geek — can do Linux, anybody can do Linux. You don’t have to be a command-line guru anymore.


27 posted on 04/10/2013 11:05:40 AM PDT by kevao (.)
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To: CodeToad
I hardly think OSes put this country into debt.

Well, that, plus jack-leg coders masquerading as programmers, analysts, DBAs, and managers.

28 posted on 04/10/2013 12:08:00 PM PDT by meadsjn
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To: SgtHooper
I would quarrel with that test.

Lets go back to when windows 3.0 was introduced ...I can remeber lots of folks that just could not handle.....IT,

If a user can handle the Firefox browser,....there is practically nothing to learn.

29 posted on 04/10/2013 12:50:39 PM PDT by Ernest_at_the_Beach ((The Global Warming Hoax was a Criminal Act....where is Al Gore?))
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To: djf
Mainframe System Engineer (IBM Type) since 1965....been thru all of the different OS there from 8K DOS to MVS and VM/370.

Now there were some real messes getting customers moved from one to the other.

Massive amount of planning and trouble shooting.

30 posted on 04/10/2013 12:57:09 PM PDT by Ernest_at_the_Beach ((The Global Warming Hoax was a Criminal Act....where is Al Gore?))
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To: ShadowAce
I have a question on Fedora...Gnome(running Korora,...Fedora based) What is the name of the component that allows the multiple windows or workspaces on the right sie?.

LuninuX also has it.

I really like how it works for me.

31 posted on 04/10/2013 1:11:20 PM PDT by Ernest_at_the_Beach ((The Global Warming Hoax was a Criminal Act....where is Al Gore?))
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach

The Window Manager for Gnome3 is Mutter - is that your question?


32 posted on 04/10/2013 1:16:36 PM PDT by 2 Kool 2 Be 4-Gotten
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To: 2 Kool 2 Be 4-Gotten
Hmmm...

I am not sure whether it is a window manager or a workspace manager.

But that might give me a clue.

Prior to trying Korora I was running Mint with the Compiz rotating cube and Mint was not interested in keeping it as a basic default,...so I went looking.

I will do some checking now that I have a name.

33 posted on 04/10/2013 1:38:48 PM PDT by Ernest_at_the_Beach ((The Global Warming Hoax was a Criminal Act....where is Al Gore?))
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach

Good. I stand corrected, and pleased actually, since linux used to be tough to setup and deal with. It needs to be seamless to install and use for the average user, is all I’m saying.


34 posted on 04/10/2013 1:40:03 PM PDT by SgtHooper (The last thing I want to do is hurt you. But it's still on the list.)
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To: djf
Linux is a dam mess.

Agreed; I always get the feeling that the operating system (and tools) are working against me when I use Linux.

You do not get productivity out of changing (or ENHANCING) user interfaces.

Windows 8 should be just another point proving that.

mainframe systems engineer since 1985!!!

Nice; I hear mainframes have extremely stable software-stacks, many using COBOL.. and having uptime for services measured in years. That's a world of difference from Desktop Application development... though it would be mitigated/alleviated somewhat if "the industry" were concerned with correctness [& maintainability].

35 posted on 04/10/2013 1:43:33 PM PDT by OneWingedShark (Q: Why am I here? A: To do Justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with my God.)
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To: OneWingedShark

They can’t maintain this kind of cross-platform workability.

Cell phones are schizophrenic, they don’t know if they are supposed to be phones, computers, Facebook interfaces, GPS devices, or toasters!

Same with much if not most of the new hardware coming out.

Hey, a single approach over all these types of devices is a great idea, but it’s just not going to work! They are functionally different.

And I don’t give a rats rear end if Java runs on all those things. Java has been junk since the word go. Another good idea that had bad implementation.


36 posted on 04/10/2013 1:52:20 PM PDT by djf (Rich widows: My Bitcoin address is... 1ETDmR4GDjwmc9rUEQnfB1gAnk6WLmd3n6)
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To: SgtHooper
There have been some real improvements in installation of Many ( Not all ) Distros,...

Partitioning is the most complex ( it seems to me ) but Ubuntu has it worked out pretty well....and a lot of Distros are using the same scheme.

Viewing the use of Linux as a 90% web browser.

Driving printers ( I haven't gotten my HP photosmart AIO printer to work for me.)But I have little use for it and I do have a windows laptop that handles it.

There is an interesting Beta project that may be a real answer when they get it further along.

Check out :

Qubes OS

Qubes OS is a security-oriented, Fedora-based desktop Linux distribution whose main concept is "security by isolation" by using domains implemented as lightweight Xen virtual machines. It attempts to combine two contradictory goals: how to make the isolation between domains as strong as possible, mainly due to clever architecture that minimises the amount of trusted code, and how to make this isolation as seamless and easy as possible.

*********************************************************

To get it installed ,,,,it is not much different,....to really set up....well I am looking at it.

If you install it on a Hard Drive,...make sure that is the onld drive in your system,...

I think it messed up the mbr when I put it up on mine without disconnecting the other drives....

But it is a Beta.

Not yet ready ....although I fire it up to access my online banking with the included Firefox Browser.

37 posted on 04/10/2013 2:04:30 PM PDT by Ernest_at_the_Beach ((The Global Warming Hoax was a Criminal Act....where is Al Gore?))
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To: OneWingedShark

The machines that run the web...the servers have a very high percentage of Linux as the operating systems and nearly all of the top 500 supercomputers run Linux or some Unix OS.


38 posted on 04/10/2013 2:15:54 PM PDT by Ernest_at_the_Beach ((The Global Warming Hoax was a Criminal Act....where is Al Gore?))
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach

HP printer drivers are weird.

I went through the gates of hell trying to get my Officejet V40 running under Windows XP.

But it ran fine under Windows 2000 SP4!

Didn’t make sense to me then, and still doesn’t but it works and I got enough other stuff to wonder about so I ain’t gonna sweat it...


39 posted on 04/10/2013 2:18:27 PM PDT by djf (Rich widows: My Bitcoin address is... 1ETDmR4GDjwmc9rUEQnfB1gAnk6WLmd3n6)
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To: djf
They can’t maintain this kind of cross-platform workability.

Nope.

Cell phones are schizophrenic, they don’t know if they are supposed to be phones, computers, Facebook interfaces, GPS devices, or toasters!

This is true; though I think there was similar situations w/ early PCs [and nonstandard-that-became-standard] hardware.
Interesting how some of the software was set-up for hardware that never became popular; example: DOS INT 10, AH = $04 VIDEO - READ LIGHT PEN POSITION

Same with much if not most of the new hardware coming out.

This is true; and what's kind of sad is there've been some very interesting hardware -- the Rekursiv processor (OOP in the chip, basically), the Symbolics LISP Machine (custom hardware, the OS in LISP, with the ability to do real-time patching of the OS while in-use), the R-1000 (a custom-built minicomputer for Ada programming)

Hey, a single approach over all these types of devices is a great idea, but it’s just not going to work! They are functionally different.

A single approach is feasible [in a sense] with something like Ada, which was designed for large software projects (packages/generics play nicely together for making SW components) and the language spec allows construction of compilers that reject the source-code if it is unable to compiler it (e.g. trying to use Type K is Range 0..2**32-1 on an 8-bit processor). [The formals of a generic package can require another package -- so if you made your photography subsystem dependent on the camera package (device driver) you could build a whole cell-phone framework.]

That level of design is, quite frankly, not really even considered in most SW development these days. (Unsurprising given how much is done on Desktop Applications or *shudder* javascript or PHP*.)

And I don’t give a rats rear end if Java runs on all those things. Java has been junk since the word go. Another good idea that had bad implementation.

I tend to agree... though the JVM is separate from the language which means you can have other languages compile to the JVM, so it might not be quite as bad as it would otherwise be -- though in-practice you'd be hardpressed to find a company using a non-Java language targeting the JVM {Much like C# & .NET}.

* How can you expect a program to work when you you're assigning "random-shit" to variables? -- John Carmack, QuakeCon 2011@~15:45

40 posted on 04/10/2013 3:02:16 PM PDT by OneWingedShark (Q: Why am I here? A: To do Justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with my God.)
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach
The machines that run the web...the servers have a very high percentage of Linux as the operating systems and nearly all of the top 500 supercomputers run Linux or some Unix OS.

So? Doesn't mean I have to like it. And it doesn't mean other OSes aren't capable of it, like this one.

41 posted on 04/10/2013 3:09:25 PM PDT by OneWingedShark (Q: Why am I here? A: To do Justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with my God.)
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To: djf
It’s very poor design, whether it be Windows or Linux, to let some application tweak the registry or modify functionality without thorough testing and acceptance. Any decent SDLC (software development life cycle) person can tell you that.

Hey, man... you are preaching to the choir - I am enough of a duffer to prefer .cfg/.ini right in the folder with the executable - I have never understood the need for a registry at all. Every now and then I still run into software designed that way - Simply DEL the directory and the program, and everything to do with the program is instantly 'uninstalled'.

I firmly believe that the only reason for a reg is for obfuscation purposes.

The majority of people who use computers are not technical, AND THEY DON’T WANT TO BE!

Yup... Maybe not quite as fervent as you - My favorite clients are the ones that knew their stuff back in the DOS-Win9x days... Not necessarily much more than super-user, let's say (which you kinda HAD to be back in the day)... But they aren't scared off if you have them open a cmdbox, and simple routines (AV scans, backup jobs, etc) are allowed for and assumed to be worthy of learning...

I think it is a shame to dumb-down the system for crayola-eating idiots. I think there is an inherent learning curve (albeit a fairly simple one) that must be accomplished for reasonable operation. And for the most part, my clients are happy to be taught the basics.

42 posted on 04/10/2013 3:37:29 PM PDT by roamer_1 (Globalism is just socialism in a business suit.)
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To: djf; roamer_1
"The majority of people who use computers are not technical, AND THEY DON’T WANT TO BE!"

Oh, man, I just ride in 'em ... I don't know what makes 'em work.

43 posted on 04/10/2013 3:44:06 PM PDT by BlueLancer ("Oh, man, that's a lot of Indians!" [LTC George A. Custer, 1876, near the Little Bighorn Valley])
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To: ShadowAce
“I currently run XFCE on Fedora. It’s a great GP distro.”

I have been a redhat man since the 90’s, but it seems like fedora is going downhill. I have fedora 17/Gnome3.4.2 on my desktop. I can't get vmware player to run - moved to virtual box ( not that that is bad!!). Tried to get USB running with vitualbox and failed - now I get occasional system hangups. You have to go out and hunt down codecs. The list goes on and on - a lot of little things like that bugging me. I am thinking about moving to Linux Mint.

44 posted on 04/10/2013 3:47:17 PM PDT by beef (Who Killed Kennewick Man?)
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To: 2 Kool 2 Be 4-Gotten

“The article is 100% spot on when he says users do not like change.”

This user agrees wholeheartedly. It takes a while to learn all this stuff, and when it changes you do not get training or time to relearn it. And when you are done, it is usually just different, not better. Instead of putting all the new stuff as the default and making the user roll it back, they should bury the new interface somewhere and let the persons so inclined “discover” it. They will have a good old time doing it, and if it really is better, the rest will come over in good time.


45 posted on 04/10/2013 4:00:31 PM PDT by beef (Who Killed Kennewick Man?)
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To: djf
“They want their computer to be like the old TV’s.”

Up until the 60’s, you had to turn on the radio and wait a minute for the tubes to warm up before you could listen. Then we got transistors - turn it on and listen immediately. Now, the radio has a computer. Turn it on, wait a minute or 2 until it boots up, and if they don't force an immediate FW upgrade on you, you can listen to the radio. Seems like we are going in the wrong direction.

46 posted on 04/10/2013 4:12:24 PM PDT by beef (Who Killed Kennewick Man?)
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To: beef

It all depends on whose side of the fence you’re sitting on. From a software maintenance point of view, once you’ve dropped the new big block v8 in the chassis, you don’t want to spend time maintaining the old v6 for the occasional use. Not saying that’s how the user wants it to be but it’s how the developers will tend to view things and they are the ones that ultimately make the call.


47 posted on 04/10/2013 4:13:25 PM PDT by 2 Kool 2 Be 4-Gotten
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To: OneWingedShark

What is the hardware for OpenVMS?


48 posted on 04/10/2013 5:22:41 PM PDT by Ernest_at_the_Beach ((The Global Warming Hoax was a Criminal Act....where is Al Gore?))
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach
What is the hardware for OpenVMS?

Wikipedia says: VAX, Alpha, Itanium. [here]

49 posted on 04/10/2013 6:02:05 PM PDT by OneWingedShark (Q: Why am I here? A: To do Justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with my God.)
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To: 2 Kool 2 Be 4-Gotten
I am a firmware developer, and I understand that mindset. But every “upgrade” is not better than it's predecessor, especially wholesale changes to user interfaces. You made an analogy to automobile improvements. What if they decided that the car should go left when the steering wheel is turned clockwise, and vice-versa, on the theory that clockwise is "Forward"? Extrapolating current practices, they would put a switch somewhere under the dashboard that changes the behavior according to user preference and ship it with the new setting as default so people would have to try it out and see how great it is. You would have to look on the internet to see how to change it back, and every time you removed the battery it would resume the default.
50 posted on 04/10/2013 6:04:35 PM PDT by beef (Who Killed Kennewick Man?)
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